Leadership (Part Nine)

Businesses have many challenges, but it is how you deal with those challenges that define you as a leader and your attitude toward them can have a great impact on your business’s success and survival.

 Being the “head” of a company or department is not an easy task and comes with a lot of responsibilities. If what you do for a living is your passion then you want to do it as best as you can and inspire others to follow your example; this is what leadership is all about.

A company becomes successful when everyone involved is on the same page and feel safe within its environment. Then and only then, will staff show their true potential and work hard to achieve the company’s goals.

Let us now start getting into the detail of how to become a leader and how to develop a leadership personality and why they are important to your business’s success.

Leadership is extremely important for every company because it’s the main driver for achieving goals through innovation. With good leadership guiding staff in the right direction companies thrive and take healthy risks for the company’s growth.

On the contrary, poor leadership can impede organizational success and result in failures in multiple levels.

A leader is a person that has the gift of motivating others by setting themselves up as an example for everyone to see, be inspired by and follow. However, you can spot a true leader by paying attention to other attributes of their character. Here are the most important leadership personality traits to look for in others and in yourself!

Interpersonal communication skills- In order to lead, one has to possess the ability to articulate their opinion clearly and leave no room for misunderstandings. The art of communication plays a huge role in building trust among employees and across management levels.  Leaders know that communication is two way and they understand that their staff want to be heard. A true leader is always respectful, doesn’t make generalizations and knows how to manage conflicts and situations where constructive criticism is necessary to move forward.

Strategic thinking- In the long-standing debate between managers vs. leaders, a strategic mind-set is a quality that separates them. What this means not only having a vision for your company but also having the determination to work towards realizing it.

Great leaders don’t get distracted on the way to achieving their goals by minor details and are constantly asking themselves “what’s the next move that will get the company in a better place?” As mentioned above, it takes good leadership skills to communicate that vision properly to other members of the company, whether it is to peers or subordinates.

Team player- Leaders don’t sit all day in their office, looking at charts and micromanaging their team. Instead, they understand that being involved and open to the ideas of employees is crucial to the organization’s success. A very important leadership attribute is seeking out others’ opinions making them feel safe in expressing their disagreement whenever necessary, and providing positive feedback when someone performs well!

That kind of behavior creates an environment of trust in which employees can unfold their true potential and boosts their productivity, thus contributing to the business’s vision.

Next week we will continue to look at the personality traits of leadership

The writer is a Kigali Based business consultant and strategist.

www.gmskigali.com

E-mail: john@gmskigali.com

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